Aurora native Jones part of Avalanche sled trio named to 2022 Paralympic Sled Hockey Team
USA Hockey has announced the 17-player roster for the 2022 Paralympic Sled Hockey Team that will compete at the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games in Beijing, China from March 4-14.
The group features 11 players who have represented Team USA previously on the Paralympic stage as well as six athletes making their Paralympic debuts.
Among the 17 are Aurora native Malik Jones, Oregon native Rico Roman and California native Ralph DeQuebec, three players with the Colorado Avalanche sled hockey program.
“I want to congratulate each player on being selected to the Paralympic team,” said Dan Brennan, director of sled national teams for USA Hockey and general manager of the 2022 U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team. “It’s always such an honor to represent our country at the Paralympic level. We have a great group of athletes, both young and veteran players, and I am excited for us to come together as a group during training in the lead up to Beijing.”
In addition to the 11 athletes who helped the U.S. capture gold at the 2018 Paralympics in PyeongChang, South Korea, the roster includes 14 players who led Team USA to its second-straight and fifth overall gold medal in world championship history at the 2021 Para Ice Hockey World Championship in Ostrava, Czech Republic.
“I’m really honored and excited to be a part of this team,” said David Hoff, head coach of the 2022 U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team. “This is a real dynamic group of athletes, and every player brings something unique to the table. I want to congratulate all the players on achieving this honor and thank them for their efforts they’ve put forth thus far, but we all know this is just the beginning. We’re looking forward to growing as a group as we look ahead and prepare for Beijing.”
Roman earned gold with Team USA in 2014 and 2018, while DeQuebec will be making his second Paralympic appearance after representing Team USA in 2018, and Jones is making his first international appearance with Team USA.
Team USA will enter Beijing after winning an unprecedented third-straight Paralympic gold medal in 2018 in PyeongChang, South Korea. The United States is the only nation to have claimed three-straight gold medals or win back-to-back gold medals in Paralympic history. All-time, the U.S. holds a 22-2-0-6-1 (W-OTW-OTL-L-T) record and has earned five medals, including four gold medals (2002, 2010, 2014, 2018) and one bronze medal (2006).
(January 24, 2022)